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Publication numberUS3491327 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJan 20, 1970
Filing dateNov 20, 1967
Priority dateNov 20, 1967
Publication numberUS 3491327 A, US 3491327A, US-A-3491327, US3491327 A, US3491327A
InventorsGoldwater Robert W Jr, Tait Thomas
Original AssigneeWestland Plastics Inc
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Safety cover for electrical plug outlets
US 3491327 A
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

Jan. 20, 1970 T. TAlT ET AL SAFETY COVER FIOR ELECTRICAL PLUG OUTLETS Filed Nov. 20. 1967 INVNTOR.

BYR

RTM Vania Tn. (JD-Mug.

A TTGRNEY United States Patent US. Cl. 339-36 2 Claims ABSTRACT OF THE DISCLOSURE A safety cover for electric plug outlets that is a substantially rectangular box-shaped cover having the front, sides and top surfaces completely enclosed with a partially enclosed bottom surface and an elongated wall-facing opening, the wall-facing opening being provided with an inwardly extending flange formed on each end of its longitudinal edges, each of the flanges being provided with a downwardly facing inclined plane so that when the face plate of the electrical outlet is loosened, and the safety cover is slid down into position, the wedging force of the inclined planes between the wall and the back of the face plate will retighten the plate and firmly mount the cover thereto. The safety cover is of sufficient depth to house the plugs, and the partially enclosed bottom surface permits the plugs to remain in place when the cover is being installed and the partially enclosed bottom surface is formed so that the electric cords extending therefrom will resist the removal of the cover.

Cross-references to related applications There are no cross-references to related applications.

Background of the invention The field of the invention lies in electric wall outlets and is particularly directed to a safety cover for electric wall outlets.

Heretofore safety covers for electric outlets required a special retainer plate installed under the face plate to which the cover was demountably attached by tension latches. Another prior art structure was screwed to a special retainer. Still another prior art structure required the, use of tools to loosen the face plate each time a plug was removed or installed.

Summary of the invention In applicants invention it is an object to provide a safety cover for electric outlets which is simple to form and inexpensive to manufacture.

Another object of the invention is to provide a safety cover for electric outlets which prevents children from contacting the terminals of the outlet.

Another object of the invention is to provide a safety cover for electric outlets that is adapted to be installed on outlets now in use.

And it is an object to provide the aforementioned de vice which is easy to install, and subsequent removal and reinstallation does not require the use of tools.

Brief description of the drawings FIG. 1 is a perspective view of the safety cover for an electric outlet illustrating the features of this invention.

FIG. 2 is a sectional view of the safety cover on the line 22 of FIG. 1.

FIG. 3 is a sectional view of the safety cover mounted on an electrical wall outlet.

FIG. 4 is an enlarged fragmentary sectional view of a 3,491,327 Patented Jan. 20, 1970 wall outlet face plate with a flange of the safety cover installed.

FIG. 5 is a fragmentary sectional view on the line 55 of FIG. 3.

Description of the preferred embodiment As an example of the preferred embodiment there is shown an electric wall outlet safety cover indicated generally at 10. As best shown in FIGS. 1 and 2 the cover 10 is a substantially box-shaped structure having side surfaces 11 and 12, top surface 13, partially open bottom surface 14, and wall facing open base 15. The base 15 is a rectangular opening circumvented on the top by edge 16, and on its sides by edges 17 and 18 with the bottom being open. The lower ends 19 of side edges 17 and 18 have inwardly extending flanges 20, and the upper ends 21 of edges 17 and 18 are provided with inwardly extending flanges 22. Each flange 20 and 22 is provided with a downwardly facing inclined plane 23 formed in its lower portion. The bottom surface 14 of cover 10 is formed with face plate admitting open area 24, a plug admitting open area 25, and a cord admitting open area FIGS. 3, 4 and 5 illustrate the safety cover 10 installed on a standard electric wall outlet 27 mounted in wall 28, the outlet 27 being provided with a face plate 29 and a face plate mounting screw 30 which demountably attaches the plate 29 to a receptacle 31. The receptacle 31 is recessed into wall 28 so that when plate 29 is mounted to the receptacle the peripheral edges 32 of the plate 29 engage the wall.

To install the safety cover 10 on outlet 27, the face plate mounting screw 30 is loosened to provide a gap 33 between the wall 28 and the face plate 29. To provide optimum cover mounting characteristics the gap 33 should be slightly smaller than the thickness of the flanges 20 and 22 as will hereinafter be described in detail. With the cover 10 positioned above the outlet 27 so that face plate 29 enters open area 24 of bottom surface 14, and the inclined planes 23 of flanges 20 inserted in the gap 33, movement of the cover 10 in the direction of arrow 34 will wedge the inclined planes 23 into gap 33 thus deflecting the face plate 29 to permit complete insertion of the flanges 20 in gap 33. Further movement of the cover 10 in the direction of arrow 34 will permit similar insertion and entry of flanges 22. With the safety cover 10 thus installed, it will be firmly held in position by peripheral edges 32 of face plate 29.

The open areas 25 and 26 of bottom surface 14 per- ,mits the cover 10 to be installed with the plugs 35 in position within the receptacle 31. The safety cover 10 may also be used to prevent the insertion of metallic objects into the receptacle when plugs 35 are not used.

Removal of the safety cover 10 from the outlet 27 is inhibited not only by the restraining forces exerted by the peripheral edges 32, but also by the relative position of the cord admitting open area 26. As best seen in FIGS. 3 and 5, area 26 is in vertical alignment with the cord emitting ends 37 of plugs 35. Removal of the cover 10 will cause the area 26 to travel along line 38 of FIG. 3, thus the cords 36 must pass through the area 26 or the cover 10 cannot be removed. A further inhibiting force is exerted by cords 36 when area 26 forms an interferencefit by depressing the cords 36 into a small are as shown in broken lines of FIG. 3.

While the apparatus herein disclosed and described constitutes a preferred form of the invention, it is also to be understood that the apparatus is capable of mechanical alteration without departing from the spirit of the invention.

3 4- We claim: (L) a front panel, formed integral with the front edges 1. An electrical wall outlet safety cover comprising in of the sides, top and bottom surfaces, combination: (M) and an inside surface on the front panel fac- (A) abox-shaped structure having, ing toward the wall and outlet engaging the cord (B) side surfaces, 5 in turned over position as the cord projects from (C) a top surface, the cord admitting end of the plug when in con- (D) a bottom surface, nected position in the outlet so as to prevent discon- (E) and a wall facing open base including a rectangunection of the plug from the outlet.

lar opening circumvented by the top and by side 2. An electric wall outlet safety cover as in claim 1 edges with the bottom being open, 'wherein the distance between the inside surface of the (F) inwardy extending flanges formed on the lower front panel and the cord admitting end of the plug is less ends of the side edges, than the distance of movement required to withdraw the (G) further inwardly extending flanges formed on the plug from the outlet receptacle.

upper ends of the side edges, (H) downwardly facing inclined planes formed on References Cited the lower portions of each of the inwardly extend- UNITED STATES PATENTS S i ggz t d 1 2,415,602 2/1947 Monaco 174 4s P a e m1 mg area 3,013,105 12/1961 Craig 174 67 (I) a plug admitting open area, (K) and a cord admitting open area cut in the front A N A CHAMPION, P i Examiner portion of the plug admitting open area so that the cover may be slid downwardly behind the face plate JOSEPH MCGLYNN Assistant Examiner while in engagement with the wall surface with the Us L XR electric plugs and associated cords in connected position in the outlet, 339-

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2415602 *Mar 16, 1944Feb 11, 1947Monaco George CGuard for flush wall outlets
US3013105 *Aug 17, 1959Dec 12, 1961Henry Keck AssociatesCovered cord holder attachment for electrical outlets
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3656083 *Sep 1, 1970Apr 11, 1972Brook Richard GElectrical safety device
US3683314 *Jan 21, 1971Aug 8, 1972Bunker RamoCable junction box
US3790921 *Nov 12, 1971Feb 5, 1974Danfoss AsElectric connecting device for an encased refrigerating machine
US4102471 *Sep 8, 1977Jul 25, 1978Nicola LoreSwitch guard assembly
US4363944 *Oct 5, 1981Dec 14, 1982Poirier Earl JMethod of preventing unintentional actuation of a light switch
US4530555 *Jun 6, 1983Jul 23, 1985South Robert EElectrical outlet guard
US4531794 *Jan 27, 1984Jul 30, 1985Heverly Karen HElectrical outlet safety fixture
US4541538 *Apr 16, 1984Sep 17, 1985General Electric CompanyWiring device covers
US4627684 *Jul 23, 1984Dec 9, 1986Harvey Hubbell IncorporatedHousing for electrical connectors
US4640985 *Apr 26, 1985Feb 3, 1987Schlumberger Canada LimitedSnap-fitting transformer terminal cover
US4915638 *Apr 29, 1988Apr 10, 1990Anthony DomianProtective enclosure for electrical outlets
US5067907 *Feb 19, 1991Nov 26, 1991Shotey Michael JCover and sheath for electrical outlets
US5071361 *Jun 3, 1991Dec 10, 1991Wright Howard CDrapery guard
US5387761 *May 6, 1993Feb 7, 1995Simonis; AndrewSafety electrical receptacle assembly
US5575677 *Dec 6, 1994Nov 19, 1996Buckner; Gregory W.Electrical power plug retainer
US5621192 *Jun 21, 1993Apr 15, 1997Thomas & Betts CorporationHousing for electrical outlets
US5731545 *Feb 27, 1997Mar 24, 1998The Whitaker CorporationProtective housing for an electrical device
US6457843Mar 9, 2001Oct 1, 2002Billie-Jo M. KesterOutlet covering system
US6677525Dec 27, 2002Jan 13, 2004Frank D. WalkerSocket shield
US6700063Apr 23, 2002Mar 2, 2004Taymac CorporationHorizontal and vertical mountable weatherproof cover plate
US6770815Apr 7, 2003Aug 3, 2004Michael J. ShoteyBase and electrical outlet having an expandable base mounting aperture and method for making same
US6770816Nov 3, 2003Aug 3, 2004Taymac CorporationConvertible electrical device cover and method for installing same
US6894223Jan 12, 2004May 17, 2005Taymac CorporationHorizontal and vertical mountable weatherproof cover plate
US6949708 *Aug 6, 2004Sep 27, 2005Hausen Daniel MFrictionally mounted utility switch box masking cover
US6960721Dec 30, 2004Nov 1, 2005Shotey Michael JConvertible electrical device cover having removable tabs with offset grooves
US6987225Jun 29, 2004Jan 17, 2006Shotey Michael JConvertible electrical device cover and method for installing same
US7056145 *Mar 12, 2004Jun 6, 2006Campbell Iii Richard GPlug securing and outlet cover device
US7071415Feb 18, 2005Jul 4, 2006Taymac CorporationHorizontal and vertical in-use electrical device cover
US7119277Oct 24, 2005Oct 10, 2006Michael J. ShoteyConvertible electrical device cover and method for installing same
US7282643Feb 11, 2005Oct 16, 2007Taymac CorporationWeatherproof receptacle cover with adapter plate
US7323639Oct 10, 2006Jan 29, 2008Taymac CorporationConvertible electrical device cover and method for installing same
US7348486Jan 11, 2007Mar 25, 2008Michael J. ShoteyConvertible electrical device cover and method for installing same
US7368662Jul 5, 2006May 6, 2008Taymac CorporationHorizontal and vertical in-use electrical device cover
US7381890Jan 3, 2007Jun 3, 2008Taymac CorporationRecessed electrical outlet cover and box
US7381895Feb 8, 2007Jun 3, 2008Taymac CorporationWeatherproof cover plate
US7402749Jun 14, 2007Jul 22, 2008Shotey Marcus JWeatherproof cover plate
US7410372Aug 24, 2006Aug 12, 2008Hubbell IncorporatedWeatherproof cover assembly
US7439444Oct 25, 2007Oct 21, 2008Taymac CorporationHorizontal and vertical in-use electrical device cover
US7449634May 24, 2007Nov 11, 2008Taymac CorporationElectrical device cover
US7462778Mar 29, 2005Dec 9, 2008Taymac CorporationHorizontal and vertical mountable weatherproof cover plate
US7538272Oct 31, 2007May 26, 2009Taymac CorporationWeatherproof cover plate
US7763798Oct 26, 2007Jul 27, 2010Taymac CorporationConvertible electrical device cover and method for installing same
US7880086Jul 15, 2010Feb 1, 2011Taymac CorporationConvertible electrical device cover and method for installing same
US7968794Sep 15, 2008Jun 28, 2011Taymac CorporationTwo lid horizontal and vertical mountable electrical device cover
US7977572Oct 31, 2008Jul 12, 2011Taymac CorporationElectrical device cover
US8314335Jan 11, 2011Nov 20, 2012Hubbell IncorporatedConvertible electrical device cover and method for installing same
US8558111Sep 30, 2010Oct 15, 2013Hubbell IncorporatedRound box to single gang cover adapter
Classifications
U.S. Classification439/135, 174/67, 439/147, 439/373, 174/488
International ClassificationH02G3/14, H01R13/639
Cooperative ClassificationH02G3/14, H01R13/6395
European ClassificationH02G3/14, H01R13/639D
Legal Events
DateCodeEventDescription
Apr 30, 1984AS02Assignment of assignor's interest
Owner name: GLENCO INFANTS ITEMS, INC., 108 FAIRWAY COURT, NOR
Effective date: 19840104
Owner name: GMI, INC. A DE CORP.
Apr 30, 1984ASAssignment
Owner name: GLENCO INFANTS ITEMS, INC., 108 FAIRWAY COURT, NOR
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST.;ASSIGNOR:GMI, INC. A DE CORP.;REEL/FRAME:004262/0543
Effective date: 19840104
Mar 5, 1984ASAssignment
Owner name: GMI, INC.
Free format text: CHANGE OF NAME;ASSIGNOR:JACKEL INTERNATIONAL HOLDINGS, INC.;REEL/FRAME:004236/0526
Effective date: 19831208
Owner name: JACKEL INTERNATIONAL, INC.
Free format text: CHANGE OF NAME;ASSIGNOR:WESTLAND PLASTICS, INC.;REEL/FRAME:004236/0527
Effective date: 19781218
Owner name: JACKEL INTERNATIONAL, INC.,A CORP OF CA
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST.;ASSIGNOR:JACKEL INTERNATIONAL HOLDING, INC.,;REEL/FRAME:004236/0529
Mar 5, 1984AS02Assignment of assignor's interest
Owner name: JACKEL INTERNATIONAL HOLDING, INC.,
Effective date: 19831208
Owner name: JACKEL INTERNATIONAL, INC.,A CORP OF CA
Mar 5, 1984AS01Change of name
Owner name: JACKEL INTERNATIONAL, INC.
Owner name: WESTLAND PLASTICS, INC.
Effective date: 19781218